SWEENEY TODD Opens 2/10 at The Stage
Just in time for Valentine's Day The Stage puts its unique style on a musical masterpiece with a re-envisioning of the revered Sondheim classic Sweeney Todd. In this stripped-down version fierce lovers explore revenge, passion, and greed through Sondheim's masterful Tony & Drama Desk winning score.
In this modern envisioning of the seductive & infamous tale of Sweeney Todd, an unjustly exiled barber returns to London seeking vengeance against the lecherous judge who framed him and ravaged his young wife. The road to revenge leads Todd to Mrs. Lovett, a resourceful proprietress of a failing pie shop. When Sweeney opens his new barber practice Mrs. Lovett's luck sharply shifts as Sweeney's thirst for blood inspires the addition of a unique ingredient into her meat pies that has the people of London lining up... and the carnage begins in this ravishing tale of love and retribution.
Based on a play by Christopher Bond, and adapted for the stage by Hugh Wheeler, Sweeney Todd contains one of greatest musical scores ever written. Earning eight Tony Awards, including Best Musical, & eight Drama Desk Awards in 1979. Later adapted for film by Tim Burton, starring Johnny Depp, won the Oscar for Best Production in 2008. Adding its nods for Best Revival in its multiple incarnations this critically acclaimed masterpiece has proven to be an audience favorite & a musical theatre criterion.
About the Playwrights
Hugh Wheeler was a novelist, Tony and Drama Desk Award winning playwright and screenwriter. He wrote more than thirty mystery novels under the pseudonyms Q. Patrick and Patrick Quentin, and four of his novels were transformed into films: Black Widow, Man in the Net, The Green-Eyed Monster and The Man with Two Wives. He wrote the screenplays for Travels with My Aunt, Something for Everyone, A Little Night Music and Nijinsky. His plays include Big Fish, Little Fish, Look: We've Come Through and We Have Always Lived in the Castle (adapted from the Shirley Jackson novel), he co-authored with Joseph Stein the book for a new production of the 1919 musical Irene, wrote the books for A Little Night Music, a new production of Candide, Sweeney Todd: the Demon Barber of Fleet Street, and Meet Me in St. Louis, contributed additional material for the musical Pacific Overtures, and wrote a new adaptation of the Kurt Weill opera Silverlake, which was directed by Harold Prince at the New York Opera. He received Tony and Drama Desk Awards for A Little Night Music, Candide and Sweeney Todd. Prior to his death in 1987 Mr. Wheeler was working on two new musicals, Bodo and Fu Manchu, and a new adaptation of The Merry Widow.
Stephen Sondheim is an American composer and lyricist known for more than a half-century of contributions to musical theater. Sondheim has received an Academy Award, eight Tony Awards (more than any other composer,including a Special Tony Award for Lifetime Achievement in the Theatre), eight Grammy Awards, a Pulitzer Prize, a Laurence Olivier Award, and a 2015 Presidential Medal of Freedom. He has been described by Frank Rich of The New York Times as "now the greatest and perhaps best-known artist in the American musical theater." His best-known works as composer and lyricist include A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Company, Follies, A Little Night Music, Pacific Overtures, Sweeney Todd, Merrily We Roll Along, Sunday in the Park with George, Into the Woods, Assassins, and Passion. He also wrote the lyrics for West Side Story and Gypsy.
Sondheim has written film music, contributing "Goodbye for Now" for Warren Beatty's 1981 Reds. He wrote five songs for 1990's Dick Tracy, including "Sooner or Later (I Always Get My Man)" by Madonna, which won the Academy Award for Best Song.
About the Director
Kenneth Kelleher serves as Resident Director at San Jose Stage Company, where he has directed over twenty shows, including their most recent production of Sam Shepard's Fool for Love. Among his other notable productions for The Stage are the award-winning production of Death of a Salesman (Standout Classical Production by Silicon Valley Theatre Awards, Best Production of 2015 by San Francisco Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle), The Threepenny Opera (Theatre Bay Area Outstanding Production of a Musical and Outstanding Direction of a Musical), the World Premiere of Jane Austen's Persuasion, and Red, to name a few. He served as Resident Director of The San Francisco Shakespeare Festival, and was Artistic Director of Pacific Repertory Theatre. He has directed for San Jose Repertory Theatre, TheatreWorks, California Shakespeare Theater and numerous other theatres.
*Actors appear courtesy of Actors' Equity Association.
Kenneth Kelleher Director †
Katie Coleman Music Director
Cirby Hatano Stage Manager*
Michael Palumbo Scenic & Lighting Design ‡
Abra Berman Costume Design
Steve Schoenbeck Sound Design
† Member of Stage Directors and Choreographers Society
‡ Member of United Scenic Artists